New Upper Level Literature Guides in Overdrive

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Did you know that we have recently added a wide variety of novel study/literature guides to our Overdrive library?  We have added many Spark Notes and Smoop Guides for our older students. We have a wide variety for your reading pleasure! You can find a complete list on this page, and here are a few newer titles you may want to take a look at, as well as some classics you may not have tackled yet:

Newer Titles:

the Alchemist

The Alchemist and The Alchemist Literature Guide

“My heart is afraid that it will have to suffer,” the boy told the alchemist one night as they looked up at the moonless sky.” Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself. And that no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams.”Every few decades a book is published that changes the lives of its readers forever. The Alchemist is such a book. With over a million and a half copies sold around the world, The Alchemist has already established itself as a modern classic, universally admired. Paulo Coelho’s charming fable, now available in English for the first time, will enchant and inspire an even wider audience of readers for generations to come.The Alchemist is the magical story of Santiago, an Andalusian shepherd boy who yearns to travel in search of a worldly treasure as extravagant as any ever found. From his home in Spain he journeys to the markets of Tangiers and across the Egyptian desert to a fateful encounter with the alchemist.The story of the treasures Santiago finds along the way teaches us, as only a few stories have done, about the essential wisdom of listening to our hearts, learning to read the omens strewn along life’s path, and, above all, following our dreams.

The Chocolate War

The Chocolate War and The Chocolate War Literature Guide

One of the most controversial YA novels of all time, The Chocolate War is a modern masterpiece that speaks to fans of S. E. Hinton’s The Outsiders and John Knowles’s A Separate Peace.

After suffering rejection from seven major publishers, The Chocolate War made its debut in 1974, and quickly became a bestselling–and provocative–classic for young adults. This chilling portrait of an all-boys prep school casts an unflinching eye on the pitfalls of conformity and corruption in our most elite cultural institutions.

“Masterfully structured and rich in theme; the action is well crafted, well timed, suspenseful.”–The New York Times Book Review

A Curious Incident of the dog in the nightime

the curious incident of the dog in the night-time and the curious incident of the dog in the night-time Literature Guide and Book Club Guide

Narrated by a fifteen-year-old autistic savant obsessed with Sherlock Holmes, this dazzling novel weaves together an old-fashioned mystery, a contemporary coming-of-age story, and a fascinating excursion into a mind incapable of processing emotions.

Christopher John Francis Boone knows all the countries of the world and their capitals and every prime number up to 7,057. Although gifted with a superbly logical brain, Christopher is autistic. Everyday interactions and admonishments have little meaning for him. At fifteen, Christopher’s carefully constructed world falls apart when he finds his neighbour’s dog Wellington impaled on a garden fork, and he is initially blamed for the killing.

Christopher decides that he will track down the real killer, and turns to his favourite fictional character, the impeccably logical Sherlock Holmes, for inspiration. But the investigation leads him down some unexpected paths and ultimately brings him face to face with the dissolution of his parents’ marriage. As Christopher tries to deal with the crisis within his own family, the narrative draws readers into the workings of Christopher’s mind.

And herein lies the key to the brilliance of Mark Haddon’s choice of narrator: The most wrenching of emotional moments are chronicled by a boy who cannot fathom emotions. The effect is dazzling, making for one of the freshest debut in years: a comedy, a tearjerker, a mystery story, a novel of exceptional literary merit that is great fun to read.

Life of Pi

Life of Pi and Life of Pi Literature Guide

Life of Pi is a masterful and utterly original novel that is at once the story of a young castaway who faces immeasurable hardships on the high seas, and a meditation on religion, faith, art and life that is as witty as it is profound. Using the threads of all of our best stories, Yann Martel has woven a glorious spiritual adventure that makes us question what it means to be alive, and to believe.

Classics:

All Quiet on the Western Front

All Quiet on the Western Front and All Quiet on the Western Front Literature Guide

Considered by many the greatest war novel of all time, All Quiet on the Western Front is Erich Maria Remarque’s masterpiece of the German experience during World War I.

I am young, I am twenty years old; yet I know nothing of life but despair, death, fear, and fatuous superficiality cast over an abyss of sorrow. . . .

This is the testament of Paul Bäumer, who enlists with his classmates in the German army during World War I. They become soldiers with youthful enthusiasm. But the world of duty, culture, and progress they had been taught breaks in pieces under the first bombardment in the trenches.

Through years of vivid horror, Paul holds fast to a single vow: to fight against the principle of hate that meaninglessly pits young men of the same generation but different uniforms against one another . . . if only he can come out of the war alive.

A Christmas Carol

A Christmas Carol and A Christmas Carol Literature Guide

Dickens wrote A Christmas Carol under financial duress, but it became one of his most popular and enduring stories. The old miser Ebenezer Scrooge cares nothing for family, friends, love or Christmas. All he cares about is money. Then one Christmas Eve he is visited by three ghosts: Christmas Past, Christmas Present and Christmas Yet To Come. These encounters leave Scrooge deeply moved and forever changed. Historians believe that A Christmas Carol contributed greatly to the modern sentimental Christmas.

Fahrenheit 451

Fahrenheit 451 audiobook and Fahrenheit 451 Literature Guide

The system was simple. Everyone understood it. Books were for burning, along with the houses in which they were hidden. Guy Montag was a fireman whose job it was to start fires, and he enjoys his job. He had been a fireman for ten years, and never questioned the pleasure of the midnight runs nor the joy of watching pages consumed by flames. He never questioned anything until he met a seventeen-year-old girl who told him of a past when people were not afraid and a professor who told him of a future in which people could think. Guy Montag suddenly realized what he had to do.

Pride and Prejudice

Pride and Prejudice and Pride and Prejudice Literature Guide

Mr and Mrs Bennet have five unmarried daughters. When the amiable Mr Bingly moves into the neighbourhood, Mrs Bennet therefore feels entirely sure that he is meant for one of her girls. Her eldest Miss Bennet captures his attention, but Mr Bingley’s proud friend Mr Darcy does not approve the match and takes his friend away to London. Though not before losing his own heart to the second eldest, Lizzie. With an indolent father on one side and a nervous, ignorant mother on the other, the girls soon find themselves in the middle of a disaster which throws them back in with the two gentlemen. All parties must re-think their pride and the prejudice of first impressions.

Three Musketeers

The Three Musketeers and The Three Musketeers Literature Guide

The Three Musketeers follows the young d’Artagnan in his quest to become a musketeer. He befriends the three musketeers Athos, Porthos and Aramis, whose motto is “all for one, one for all.”

There are many more titles to explore! Explore them all here.  Blessings!

reviews by Overdrive

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